There are now 10 states, plus the District of Columbia, that allow recreational or medicinal marijuana use. More are likely to follow.This trend is based on a number of factors, including the perception that the risks presented by marijuana are no worse than, and in someways lower than, alcohol. But drivers should absolutely not assume there are no risks to driving while high. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Back in the early 1960s, “Speed kills” was the simple slogan of a government program encouraging drivers to slow down. When it comes to fatalities related to high-speed collisions, the truth of that slogan was undeniable when it was rolled out. Cars at the time provided little crash protection and lacked seat belts. In fact, some vehicle features actually increased the chance of deadly injuries.
Distracted driving is nothing new. We’ve been fiddling with radios, reading maps and eating fast food in our cars for decades. But cell phones and mobile devices raise the distraction level, and the resulting collisions and deaths, to new levels. Many of us are addicted to our phones, and that addiction doesn’t stop when we get behind the wheel.